Filmmaking for A Cause
Be prepared: the film is as brutal and heartbreaking as the most alarming news footage you've ever seen of human natural disasters and tragedies such as hurricanes, earthquakes and terrorist attacks.
Richard O'Barry, who has repeatedly attempted to stop the Taiji fishermen and focus the world's attention on the situation, is a strong advocate for the dolphins. Speaking from his experiences on the Flipper set and years of working with these sentient creatures, O'Barry presents a very compelling argument that dolphins have a high degree of intelligence and the same sort of self-awareness that humans have, and that the fear and suffering the experience during their entrapment and slaughter are as profound as our own would be.
Others who are interviewed in the film indicate that they've had inter-species communications. One surfer claims a dolphin saved him from an attacking shark. All believe dolphins should be protected in the wild, where they belong.
Filmmakers Under Threat
Under Psihoyos' direction, the film crew comes up with a plan worthy of James Bond. They're going to defy local authorities to secretly set up remote control cameras and audio devices that will record and expose the fishermen's heinous behavior. The plan calls for the use of infra red and underwater cameras and other high tech devices that give this unusual film an entirely unique look.
The result is a well researched and credible advocacy documentary that fascinates and plays like a spy thriller. Throughout the film, you're rooting for O'Barry, Psihoyos and the good guys, and are scared stiff that they'll be found out and that their mission will fail. Most of all, you're rooting for the dolphins and the footage of their treatment is harrowing and heartbreaking. So, there's genuine drama here, and there will be no spoilers to guide your experience with and/or lessen the suspense and impact of this film.
Presenting Case with Craft
If You Like This Film, You May Also Like:
- The Cove - 2009
- Director: Louis Psihoyos
- US Theatrical Release Date: July 31, 2009 (limited)
- Running Time: 92 mins.
- MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for disturbing content.
- Parental Advisory: Content advisory for parents
- Location: Japan,
- Language: English and Japanese (with English subtitles)
- Production Country: USA
- Production Company: Diamond Docs
- Distribution Company: Lionsgate/Roadside Attractions
- Sundance Film Festival - Won Audience Award Documentary - 2009
- Sundance Film Festival - Nominated for Grand Jury Prize Documentary - 2009
- Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival - Won Audience Award Best Documentary - 2009
- Newport Beach Film Festival - Won Audience Award Best Documentary - 2009
- Seattle International Film Festival - Won Golden Space Needle Award Best Documentary - 2009